Critical roles of vacuolar invertase in floral organ development and male and female fertilities are revealed through characterization of GhVIN1-RNAi cotton plants
Wang, L and Ruan, YL, Critical roles of vacuolar invertase in floral organ development and male and female fertilities are revealed through characterization of GhVIN1-RNAi cotton plants, Plant Physiology, 171, (1) pp. 405-423. ISSN 0032-0889 (2016) [Refereed Article]
Copyright 2016 American Society of Plant Biologists.
Seed number and quality are key traits determining plant fitness and crop yield and rely on combined competence in male and female fertilities. Sucrose metabolism is central to reproductive success. It remains elusive, though, how individual sucrose metabolic enzymes may regulate the complex reproductive processes. Here, by silencing vacuolar invertase (VIN) genes in cotton (Gossypium hirsutum) reproductive organs, we revealed diverse roles that VIN plays in multiple reproductive processes. A set of phenotypic and genetic studies showed significant reductions of viable seeds in GhVIN1-RNAi plants, attributed to pollination failure and impaired male and female fertilities. The former was largely owing to the spatial mismatch between style and stamen and delayed pollen release from the anthers, whereas male defects came from poor pollen viability. The transgenic stamen exhibited altered expression of the genes responsible for starch metabolism and auxin and jasmonic acid signaling. Further analyses identified the reduction of GhVIN expression in the seed coat as the major cause for the reduced female fertility, which appeared to disrupt the expression of some key genes involved in trehalose and auxin metabolism and signaling, leading to programmed cell death or growth repression in the filial tissues. Together, the data provide an unprecedented example of how VIN is required to synchronize style and stamen development and the formation of male and female fertilities for seed development in a crop species, cotton.